A New 6 Ball-Bearing Gimbal Merlin availble? at DVinfo.net

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Old September 27th, 2007, 12:29 PM   #1
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A New 6 Ball-Bearing Gimbal Merlin availble?

Sorry if this is dumb question but...

Has a NEW version of the Merlin Steadicam been released that includes a 6 Ball-Bearing Gimbal and is NOT part of the arm and vest unit? In other words does the Merlin Steadicam (all by itself) now come with a 6 ball-bearing gimbal versus the old 2 ball-bearing gimbal? Or is the 6 ball-bearing gimbal only a part of the steadicam/arm and vest unit?

I couldn't quite ascertain from the website if this was the case, even though it speaks of upgrading the older merlins.

http://www.steadicam.com/merlinarmvest.html

If it is true that one can now purchase a Merlin with a 6 ball-bearing gimbal, without the arm or vest, then count me in! I will gladly buy one of these new Merlins since they can take almost two extra pounds of weight. That will be perfect for my FX1, (huge) battery and shot gun mic. Hopefully the price won't be that different.

Anyone know what the deal is here?
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Old September 27th, 2007, 12:40 PM   #2
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It's coming:

http://www.bhphotovideo.com/c/produc...R_w_METAL.html
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Old September 27th, 2007, 04:54 PM   #3
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Besides increase weight capacity, are there any other benefits from having a metal gimble?

The old one seems to work fine for light camcorders...
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Old September 27th, 2007, 04:58 PM   #4
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Never fails as I just purchased one and now a upgraded version is released.
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Old September 27th, 2007, 08:24 PM   #5
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So far I really can't notice any better stability with the metal gimble. If you are going to load the Merlin up to the max without the vest then you better start hitting the gym big time.
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Old September 28th, 2007, 12:12 AM   #6
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I don't think an extra 2lbs is going to kill anyone. Besides, I like to feel the burn.
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Old October 2nd, 2007, 07:52 AM   #7
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Nick Tsamandanis, do you have the new metal gimble merlin already? B&H is out of stock and I couldn't get my hand on any set at the moment.
What is your review of this new set over the old merlin?
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Old October 2nd, 2007, 08:57 AM   #8
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Yes, apart from being able to handle more weight the new gimbal behaves a bit better than the plastic one. Now that I have played with it a bit more It does seem more stable.
William, It's not just an extra 2 pounds, don't forget that you have to add the extra counter weights as well. It gets heavy pretty quick when you are just standing there waiting for the shot.
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Old October 3rd, 2007, 05:42 PM   #9
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Well, I just placed my order with B&H for a brand new Merlin! Of course, it only has the plastic gimbel, but I'm trusting that it will be sturdy and durable enough for my purposes. I have an XH-A1 and also a GL2. I think I'll probably use the GL2 as my primary "flying" camera, although I've read enough comments here to believe that the A1 can be used on the Merlin, as long as I don't put the wide-angle attachment on it as well.

Has anyone ever reported the plastic gimbel breaking on them? I sure hope it's not an issue. I can't imagine it would be, unless you're putting too much weight on the thing in the first place.

I'm planning on selling my GL2 and its accessories and then purchasing an HV20 for my primary "flying" unit. I should even have enough cash left over to get me most of the way towards purchasing a Letus Extreme as well.

Who has used a GL2 on the Merlin? What are your impressions? Also, anyone who has been using an HV20 on the Merlin, I would appreciate hearing your impressions as well.

As soon as my Merlin arrives, I'll be posting some sample footage. I can't wait! The Merlin certainly looks like the only way to go in terms of a hand-held stabilizer. I figure that, with my GL2 on top (with the wide angle attached) it should come in around 6 lbs. with everything on it. I should be able to handle 6 lbs. with no problem -- but I'm sure I'll be devising a specific Bowflex exercise to strengthen my arm for the times I'll want to use the XH-A1. Down the road, I'm sure I'll be getting the vest and arm unit. Until then, I'll be eating my spinach ...
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Old October 4th, 2007, 12:16 AM   #10
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Yes, I use my GL2 on a Merlin. I still have the occasional seasickness inducing swaying, but overall I'm getting to where I can get most of what I want. I have the large batery and the wide angle lens on the camera pretty much permanently.

It gets heavy after a while, but I practised by walking around for 30 to 40 minutes while taping and climbing stairs etc. Had a sore arm, but footage was OK.

Biggest problem I'm having is the time it takes for the camera to stop swinging around after I push the record button. I'm going to try holding the remote in my left hand next time and see if that's workable.
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